Crispy chorizo, broad bean and wild garlic salad

Crispy chorizo, broad bean and wild garlic salad – with toasted hazelnuts, potatoes & avocado dressing

IMG_3698Smothered in a sharp and lemony, creamy avocado dressing

Today I went to London’s Highgate Cemetery. It’s a mysterious, intriguing and sprawling overgrown graveyard chock-full of tombstones, crypts and mausoleums – belonging to the rich/famous Victorians, mostly. I highly recommend a visit. The reason I’m telling you this is because I found wild garlic flowers growing all around the grave stones – the scent filled the air. I gathered a few and decided to use them in the dish I’ve concocted for tonight’s dinner.

photo-228The garlic flowers growing at the foot of the obelisk-like gravestones

I always, as you may realise from previous posts, try and work new recipes by assessing the contents of my fridge and store cupboard. Today I had rather dull new potatoes to use up and wondered how I could use the wild garlic to create a garlic-pungent potato salad of some kind. The inspiration for this recipe comes from Angels and Gypsies, a fantastic tapas restaurant in Camberwell. Last year (my memory is terrible, unless it comes to what I’ve eaten!) I ate a wild garlic, crispy bacon and broad bean salad there. The combination of the garlic with crispy meaty bits and bright green beans was tasty – and is equally tasty here.

The idea for the dressing comes from my recent musings about the avocado – we often aren’t very adventurous with this most amazing of fruits. I always turn it into guacamole, or chop it into salads. Both of these are, of course, delicious but I wanted to branch out a little. I knew it would make a lovely dressing for a salad – especially a garlicky, sharp, crispy, meaty one.

There was a sigh of sadness when we realised we’d eaten the whole of the salad. :(

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You will need:

For the salad:

150g cooking chorizo
5-6 stems worth of wild garlic flowers

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Wild garlic flowers are incredible – try a petal raw and you’ll realise how much intensity they bring to a dish! Lightly cooked, they are marvellous

200g broad beans
400g new potatoes, sliced into 1cm-thick rounds
2 tbspns hazelnuts, crushed and toasted
1/2 tbspn smoked paprika
50g mixed babyleaf salad leaves (about 1/2 a standard supermarket bag)
Olive oil

For the dressing:

1 ripe hass avocado
2 tbspn low fat creme fraiche
5-6 tbspns olive oil
1/2 tbspn white wine vinegar
1 tbspn chopped flat leaf parsley
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Salt, pepper

Method:

1 – Start by putting your potatoes on; add to salted, boiling water and cook for 10 minutes or so (drain once cooked)
2 – Meanwhile, start cooking your broad beans; once cooked til tender, drain and peel to remove the outer skins
3 – Now, get started with your chorizo; add to a hot frying pan with a dash of oil and cook until nice and crispy
4 – Once the chorizo is nice and toasted, take it off the heat, tip away most of the excess oil and stir in the wild garlic flowers; stir and set aside

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5 – Now make your dressing by blending all of the ingredients together well – add enough oil to turn it into a liquidy, dripping consistency
6 – Tip the cooked potatoes, shelled broad beans and paprika into the pan with the crispy chorizo and garlic flowers; toss well to ensure an even blend of flavours and tip into a large serving bowl
7 – Mix in the salad leaves, sprinkle over the toasted hazelnuts and stir in the dressing; enjoy!

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